New First Draft

WOOOOOP! Get the kazoos and streamers out because I just finished a new first draft!

MORE LOVELY THAN A CABBAGE PATCH (as it’s currently titled) is the YA Contemporary I blogged about at Christmas. The girl who’d rather sabotage the family business than brave her tyrannical father.

Yes, it really did take me that long to write it. I shelved it for the winter due to major overhauling on Drina’s story (79k and sticking, by the way), and took it to CampNaNoWriMo in April. ~42,000 words were written that month; then exams demanded my full attention till the end of June. I was computer-less most of July, and busy, as I have said, all August. So in the past five days I’ve pumped out the final 14k and met my target for finishing the first draft before the Autumn term.

Whew! To avoid tying myself up (because I have SO much to say about this MS) I’ve compiled a few questions for myself to answer (affected, I know).

Where did you get the idea?

I was in the shower (all the best ideas come through those pipes), contemplating my strictly-not-being anorexic, and how ill I’d felt the previous night when I tried to eat tea. I thanked my stars my computer isn’t in the kitchen as it was at the old house, and that I didn’t have to associate with food all the time. But what, I thought, if the family business were a bakery and it was my duty to knead dough and pipe cream simply for my self-respect? After the concept, the plot wrote itself.

How easy was it to write?

Because it was predominantly a NaNo project, I wouldn’t say ‘easy’ as much as ‘necessary’. But, in truth, I’d plotted so thoroughly it wasn’t a big deal. I’d stop writing in the middle of an intense scene so when I carried on the next day I wouldn’t have to build up the emotion in the writing again. It also meant I was turning the scene over and over in my head all night and all day at school, so I knew with what tone I had to resolve the chapter.

What do you love about the story?

SO much! I love how symmetrical the plot is; it’s like a parabola, where the y-axis is the place/event and the x-axis the changing role of Flavie, my MC. I love how the antagonist died before the story opens, and you don’t find out all her lies until the final few chapters. I love that family dynamics compose the body of the story; romance really isn’t the top of teenagers’ list of concerns, and Flavie’s still exploring it.

Flavie looking at life

Flavie looking at life

Which character was most fun to write?

Fran! Fran is the seventeen-year-old daughter of Flavie’s uncle’s neighbour. She’s unpredictable, cheerful in her own hypocrisy, finds wacky humour everywhere, and has a palpable effect on Flavie. Because at first she’s Flavie’s foil in terms of size and shape, she has the power to invert Flavie’s presumptions by proving they have the same problem, but Fran is the hero in terms of acting on it. Plus, she plays ukulele. 😉 So Fran’s the ideal me, and Flavie is the inclined me.

Now lose that kazoo! Remember I have to edit this manuscript sometime.